Results 1 to 4 of 4
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Armenian
      • Home Country:
      • Iran
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 2,554


    1-A leader of men, a great sportsman, a man of honour came to me.
    2-A leader of men, a great sportsman and a man of honour came to me.

    Is it sure that in 1, only one person came to me and in 2 three people came to me or are both sentences ambiguous as to the number of the people that came to me?

  1. xpert's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Arabic
      • Home Country:
      • Saudi Arabia
      • Current Location:
      • Malaysia

    • Join Date: Feb 2006
    • Posts: 740

    Re: ambiguity

    As far as I'm concerned, the two sentences are different:

    1. Appositive: different words or phrases describe one person (or thing)

    2. Conjuction: (AND) tells that the speaker talks about three different people

    I hope I helped you

    • Join Date: Oct 2006
    • Posts: 19,434

    Re: ambiguity

    Without further context, I feel both are ambiguous. The use of "and" could be stylistic and not indicative of number, unless there is something else to say so.

    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 5,409

    Re: ambiguity

    Understand that someone doesn't just come up to another person/group and say these words. There is a context, or a conversaation.
    They are the sort of words said at an award or tribute ceremony honouring someone - so it would be clear we are talking about one person. Also, just who are you that the listener would imagine that three great people would trot along to see you ..."came to me." Even one is stretching credulity, unless your famous yourself, or royalty -so there are cues/acontext in that way also.

    At rock bottom, there would be some conversation leading to this: "I've had a hectic round of entertaining this month. Last Thursday alone, a leader of men, a great sportsman, and a man of honour all came to (see) me."

Similar Threads

  1. ambiguities in sentences
    By rats in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 29-Apr-2007, 18:12
  2. Structural Ambiguity
    By naeike in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 24-Sep-2006, 08:06
  3. How to avoid ambiguity
    By nyggus in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 17-Jun-2006, 17:04
  4. ambiguity
    By rouby in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 26-Jan-2005, 02:50


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts